The word “funga” should be used alongside flora and fauna when discussing conservation issues to reflect the importance of fungi to ecosystem health, a UN body has said. From a report:

The secretariat of the UN convention on biological diversity (UNCBD) said it was time that fungi were “recognised and protected on an equal footing with animals and plants in legal conservation frameworks.”

“Whenever referring to the macroscopic diversity of life on Earth, we should use ‘flora, fauna and funga,’ and ‘animal, plants and fungi,'” it said in an Instagram post. Mycologists, mostly from Latin America, established the term “funga” five years ago. It refers to the levels of diversity of fungi in any given place, and is analogous to “flora and fauna,” which refer to plants and animals. Unlike flora and fauna, it is not a Latin term but was chosen because it is morphologically similar. “Just like mycelium, mycologically inclusive language will spread unseen but profound [sic], permeating public consciousness (and policy) to acknowledge fungi’s vital role in the grand web of life on and in Earth,” it said.


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